Qatar silent on Israel-UAE agreement

Qatari Foreign Minister meets PA chief negotiator, doesn't comment on United Arab Emirates’ accord with Israel.

Ben Ariel ,

Doha, Qatar
Doha, Qatar

Qatar kept mum on the United Arab Emirates’ accord with Israel to normalize ties as it hosted senior Palestinian Authority official Saeb Erekat on Thursday, AFP reports.

Erekat, the PA chief negotiator, and Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani "discussed developments in the Palestinian arena", an official statement said.

The minister "reaffirmed Qatar's firm position in supporting the rights of the brotherly Palestinian people... and the Arab Peace Initiative".

The statement made no mention of the accord between Israel and the United Arab Emirates announced by US President Donald Trump last week.

Qatar is locked in a diplomatic standoff with the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt, which accuse it of supporting Islamic extremists and conniving with Iran. Doha denies the charges.

While Qatar does not have diplomatic ties with Israel, it has heavily invested in the Gaza Strip, funding welfare payments to the enclave with Israel's blessing.

The Qatari envoy to the region, Mohammed al-Emadi,, acknowledged in an interview last year that cooperation with Israel is needed in order to improve the situation in Gaza.